CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY: Three were killed, four wounded, 13 others missing and 50 families evacuated at the height of the fighting between the government troopers and the communist rebels in Misamis Oriental, the military said on Wednesday.
Capt. Patrick Martinez of the Army’s Public Affairs Division in Camp Evangelista here, said two Army soldiers were killed and two others were wounded in the fire fight that erupted in the hinterlands of Lagonglong, Misamis Oriental, on Tuesday morning.
He said that the military withheld the names of the fatalities and the wounded pending notification of the nearest kin or family, although the wounded are now undergoing treatment in a military hospital here.
Local government officials identified the lone civilian fatality as Dindo Porsuelo, 30, a farmer of Umagos, Lagonglong, who was fatally hit in the crossfire while tending his farm. Relatives failed to retrieve the body of Porsuelo as fighting continues in the area.
Elements of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRRMC) in Misamis Oriental would conduct a search and retrieval of civilian casualties after the military issued clearance on Wednesday morning.
The identities of the wounded civilians are still being checked along with the names of the 13 missing civilians, mostly farmers, who remained unaccounted as of Tuesday evening.
Jojo Bascug, head of the PDRRMC, said the 50 families evacuated were provided relief assistance by the provincial welfare personnel who went to the area at the height of the fighting.
Bascug said that the relief and food assistance they distributed to each of the families would last for three days.
The military said the fighting ended on Tuesday night, although a team of army soldiers is still conducting clearing operations in the bordering towns of Lagonglong, Balingasag, and Salay.